I know that this news will not come as a surprise to you, but because of COVID-19, VHCC will begin teaching classes via alternate delivery methods beginning Monday, March 23, 2020.
What does this mean for you? First and foremost, it means that we are doing everything possible to keep your educational journey on track. Faculty are moving classes to alternate delivery methods, including online via Canvas, video conferencing , chat rooms, and even phone conferencing. We’re finalizing solutions for clinical and preceptor placements, lab/shop classes, and co-op assignments. Student services personnel have creative solutions to provide support for you related to advising, registration, financial aid, etc. We’ll be ready to go on Monday.
You will hear from your faculty in the next few days regarding the specifics of your classes; please regularly check your VHCC student email, Canvas, and the VHCC website. We recognize that moving classes to this new platform may present a challenge for some of you who have limited access to computers, a tablet, phone, and the internet. Please be assured that we are working to minimize the impact on you, and you’ll get more information about those options before classes resume on Monday. I really appreciate your patience as we work through the details during this unusual time.
We also learned today that all Virginia community colleges’ spring graduations and pinning ceremonies have been cancelled. While we’re disappointed too, students who complete their programs this spring will still graduate. And though we will not be able to honor your achievements in a formal ceremony in May, we are already planning alternative ways to celebrate your achievement.
Please be safe, everyone, and I look forward to seeing you back on campus soon!
Adam Hutchison, Ph.D.
Virginia Highlands Community College
Dear VHCC Community,
As you know, the coronavirus situation (COVID-19) is rapidly changing, and there have been many new developments. As an important member of our family, please take note of the following:
- Spring Break for students has been extended by one week (March 16-20).
- We are asking that students – and other outside guests – not visit campus.
- Out of an abundance of caution, the testing center and computer labs will be closed this week.
- VHCC employees and students, please regularly check your VHCC email, the college website (www.vhcc.edu/covid-19), myvhcc, and Canvas to receive important information.
Please know that these changes have been made to support our highest priority: the health and safety of our college community. We know that this message leaves many unanswered questions, but please continue to be patient as we work through the details in a thoughtful way.
I encourage you to continue to prevent the spread of infectious disease through adherence to CDC infection control protocols such as handwashing, hygiene, household sanitation, and social distancing.
Please be safe, and I look forward to seeing everyone back on campus soon,
Adam Hutchison, Ph.D.
Dear Virginia Highlands Community College Family,
The health and safety of our college community is our highest priority, so I write this afternoon to share with you the latest news and decisions being made for VHCC regarding the coronavirus illness (COVID-19). As of today at 11:00 am, there were 9 presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 in Virginia. The Virginia Governor’s Office has confirmed all 9 of those cases can be traced to a source such as foreign travel, and those infected did not contract the virus through sustained community transmission. At this time, the Virginia Department of Health and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management are also reporting that there are no cases of sustained community transmission of COVID-19 in Virginia. The Governor has not declared an emergency.
After careful consideration and in an abundance of caution, we have decided to take certain steps as an institution, which are consistent with public health and medical guidelines, designed to limit and mitigate the transmission of and exposure to COVID-19. Among these steps are the following:
- Spring break for students will be extended by an additional week, with classes resuming in their original format on Monday, March 23, 2020. All faculty (and staff) should report for duty on Monday, March 16, 2020. This additional week will enable faculty members, in particular, to take the steps necessary to make the transition from in-person classes to delivery of their course materials online or via other distance methods, if such a move becomes necessary.
- All non-essential travel will be suspended for employees, and all college-sponsored travel for students will be suspended until April 15, 2020. Please consult with your supervisor, club sponsor, or academic advisor to discuss individual travel cases in question.
- All large gatherings of people (100 people or more) will be postponed. Specifically, the VHCC Career Fair (currently scheduled for March 27, 2020) is postponed. All other events will move forward as planned, until further notice.
- Members of the VHCC family are expected to follow the travel information and notices from the CDC (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html) and FAQ for travelers (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/faqs.html). Those returning from domestic travel in areas highly affected by COVID-19 are encouraged to self-monitor for the development of any symptoms. Contact your healthcare provider if you develop a fever or respiratory symptoms. Travelers returning from Level 2 or 3 CDC travel notice areas will not be allowed to return to any VHCC location until they complete a 14-day self-quarantine and show no symptoms associated with COVID-19. The CDC has issued self-quarantine guidelines, as follows: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/after-travel-precautions.html.
Please note that this does not mean the college will be closed. Indeed, Virginia Highlands Community College will remain open and continue to provide essential services and to fulfill its day-to-day business functions, including open student computer labs. While a number of institutions have already made the difficult decision to either suspend coursework and/or move all coursework online, we believe that this is not necessary for VHCC at this time – because we are a non-residential institution and our campus demographics are very different. This is an option VHCC may need to exercise in the future, and we are preparing our services and campus for this possibility.
While this news is not cause for panic, we must continue to be diligent in preparing for a possible regional outbreak. Please continue to prevent the spread of infectious disease through adherence to CDC infection control protocols such as handwashing, hygiene and household sanitation. This is a rapidly evolving issue. Facts about the status of the virus, what we know about it, CDC guidance on best practices and the number of people impacted are all changing hour to hour. VHCC’s Administration and Emergency Management Team are monitoring the situation closely and will keep you informed via email, campus alerts, our website, and social media outlets if there is a decision to change VHCC operations (www.vhcc.edu/covid-19).
Thanks, and please be safe,
Adam Hutchison, Ph.D.
National and regional health agencies are monitoring an outbreak of a new coronavirus, 2019-nCoV, which has resulted in human infections. Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. The virus that causes COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus that was first identified during an investigation into an outbreak in Wuhan, China.
The safety and security of Virginia Highlands students, faculty, staff, and visitors is our greatest priority. As such, VHCC is working closely with the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) to monitor the situation and partner with VDH and local health departments on specific responses should the need arise.
There are numerous information resources available to the public:
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Situation Summary
CDC Coronavirus Disease Information for Travel
Virginia Department of Health Coronavirus Summary (including reports of potential illness)
CURRENT STUDENT SCHEDULE STATUS (last updated 3.17.2020 @ 4:33 PM):
Spring break for students will be extended by an additional week, March 16-20, 2020. Students and outside guests should not visit campus. The Testing Center and Computer Labs will be closed. Beginning Monday, March 23, 2020, VHCC classes will be taught via alternative delivery methods. Please check your VHCC student email, Canvas, and this COVID-19 portal for forthcoming updates.
Preview of Plans for Graduation - video update - April 24, 2020
Please use the MyVHCC portal to access email, course content, and other student information during VHCC’s response to the COVID-19 event.
STUDENT RESOURCES FOR ONLINE LEARNING:
Please use the Online Learning Student Resources page to find tutorials on MyVHCC, Canvas, Zoom and other helpful information for students
STUDENT EMERGENCY GRADING REFERENCE:
Please use the Student Reference Guide to help answer questions about the emergency grading system for Spring 2020 classes.
- Details about VHCC Grading System for Spring 2020 - April 8, 2020
- VHCC COVID-19 Video Update - March 27, 2020 | Dr. Hutchison Video Update
- VHCC Grading System for Spring 2020 Semester - March 27, 2020
- Spring 2020 Grading System - March 19, 2020 | Watch Dr. Hutchison's Video Update
- Classes Moving to Alternative Delivery Methods - March 17, 2020
- ALERT: VHCC Operations Update – March 15, 2020
Current Work Schedule Status (last updated 3.17.2020 @ 4:33 PM):
VHCC Employees and Telework -- March 16, 2020
Effective March 16, 2020, VHCC is moving to a telework arrangement for all employees – except those specifically designated to work on campus – until further notice. We are taking this week (March 16-20) to ramp up remote support and telework resources as quickly as possible, but we need your help. Please read the email sent to you by Dr. Hutchison today entitled “VHCC Employees and Telework – March 16, 2020” for details.
VHCC will also begin teaching classes via alternate delivery methods beginning Monday, March 23, 2020.
Please use the VHCC Intranet to access critical resources during VHCC’s response to the COVID-19 event at https://vhcc.sharepoint.com You will use your full email address for the log-in, and your current VHCC password as the password credential.
Employee Updates:All-employee updates are being archived on the VHCC Intranet. You may access them at https://vhcc.sharepoint.com You will use your full email address for the log-in, and your current VHCC password as the password credential.
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